Watchdog wants Google to change its policy but it’s unlikely to fine it
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has written to Google today, giving it until 20 September to make it clearer to UK users how their data will be used across all of the company’s products.
Google is unlikely to face a fine, as it would have to be proven there was genuine distress caused by the policy, an ICO spokesperson said.
The Internet giant came in for heavy criticism last year, when it rolled all of its separate privacy policies into one document, saying it could share user data across its various services, even including services which a given customer doesn’t use.
The Article 29 Working Party, led by French regulator CNIL, said last month Google had not been compliant with its demands to change the policy, so its members were now considering how to punish Google. No fines have been ordered thus far.
“We have engaged fully with the authorities involved throughout this process, and we’ll continue to do so going forward.”
But Google has been slapped with monetary penalties for other breaches of European data protection laws, in particular for hoovering up people’s data during its Street View rounds. Both France and Germany handed Google fines, for €100,000 and €140,000 respectively.
Yet the ICO chose not to fine Google, instead simply asking it to delete the remaining data affecting UK citizens.
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